Prof. Richard Spritz
Professor Spritz is a world-renowned researcher at the Human Medical Genetics and Genomics Program, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora. His laboratory looks at the mapping, discovery and function of disease genes affecting skin, autoimmunity, and craniofacial development, with particular focus on the molecular basis of human genetic diseases, including mutational and functional analysis of human disease genes. Over the past 25 years, his laboratory has characterized many different disorders of pigmentation, including albinism, piebaldism, and particularly vitiligo, as well as related autoimmune diseases, including autoimmune thyroid disease, type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and others, finding that these different autoimmune diseases share common underlying susceptibility genes. Most recently, Professor Spritz organized and carried out several international genome-wide association studies, involving thousands of vitiligo patients, thereby identifying at least 32 different genes that are involved with susceptibility to vitiligo.